David and Margaret Mitchell Genealogy – Appendix

A Tribute to Albert Small by David Mitchell Small

My father always provided well for his family. During the Civil War, he staid at home and his father went in his place; my father having such a large family, this plan was thought the best. My father helped at home to gather recruits, and I remember of his telling of his numerous narrow escapes from the opposition. He was always one of the leading men in the church (U. P.) The 23d psalm was his favorite and he said that when he died he wanted us to repeat that psalm. When he died, you could almost see his soul leave the body and go up to heaven. A prayer for his wife’s and his’ children’s welfare, and that the Lord would receive his soul, were his last thoughts.

A Tribute to Joseph Kyle by Joseph Kyle D.D

My father was large and strong in body, mind and spirit. He was six feet and three inches in height and as straight as an Indian until a few months before his death. His mental furnishing was especially fine. He was widely read and thoroughly interested in civil and ecclesiastical affairs. Two sons and three stepsons were in the Union army during the war, and with the spirit that sent them to the front he was in heartiest sympathy His religious life was marked by ardent zeal for what he believed to be the truth of God and for the honor of Jesus Christ. To the end of his days he was intensely interested in the welfare of the Church in which he served as ruling elder for nearly a quarter of a century.

Advance Contract Subscribers

Andrew, David Jackson.
Adams, Harriet J.
Bickett, Ruth Anna Kyle.
Bogle, Charles Leigh.
Carter, Cordelia Elizabeth.
Clark, Edgar D.
Clark, James G.
Clark, Walter H.
Clever, Mary A.
Creswell, Rachel K.
Currie, David Jackson.
Currie, Mrs. E. E. J. °
Currie, George V.
Currie, George W.
Dobbs, Ella Victoria.
Duke, James T.
Espy, James Walter.
Glass, Margaret Louise.
Griffin, Bertha Ray.
Hicks, Jane Elizabeth.
Iliffe, Margaret Louisa Small
Iliffe, William Wallace.
Johnston, J. Edward.
Johnston, Charles Frederic.
Johnston, Mrs. E. B.
Johnston, George Avery.
Johnston, James Herbert.
Knox, Ellen M.
Kyle, Joseph, D. D.
Kyle, David C.
Laughead, George Galloway, M. D.
Lauhead, David E.
McMillan, Herbert I.
Mitchell, Julia Maria.
Murphy, Mrs. M. B.
Nichol, Mrs. J. R.
Nichol, Thomas Mitchell.
Reid, Mrs. E. M. Espy.
Shepard, Inez.
Shepard, Margaret Mitchell.
Small, Granville C.
Small, William G.
Small, David Mitchell.
Stanford, Daisy.
Stormont, Jane Bradfute.
Turnbull, Thomas.
Vaughn, Arvilla M.
White, Chalmers C.
Winter, Nancy.
Winter, Samuel Wilson.
Several of the above named are taking more than one copy. The following also have promised to take one or more copies
Goodrich, Myrtle E .
Laughead, Isaac N.
Mendenhall, Maria E.
Robeson, Columbia.
Stevenson, Montgomery D.
Turnbull, Alexander.
White, Mrs. M. M. Kyle.
Winter, J. Agnew.

Advertisements in the Kentucky Gazette

A correspondent who made the search, writes from Lexington

“Up to 1802 the only mention of the names you want are the following :

“Taken up by the subscriber living on cane run about five miles from Lexington, about the 28 of April, a bay mare about thirteen hands and a half high, branded with IM and a flower deluce on the near shoulder IL on the near buttock and IM with a flower deluce on the off-buttock. Also a gray yearling horse colt, has a small streak down his face, has near hind foot white, the owner desired to come and take them away.

DAVID MITCHELL
Saturday, May 17, 1788.

Then under date of Aug. 16, 1798, is this,-“All persons are cautioned against purchasing of Joseph Hunter or his assigns any particular designated part of a tract of land of one thousand acres, lying about four miles below the mouth of the Kentucky, on the Ohio river, patented in the name of Edward. Laughed, as the said land is yet undevided, and as the particular part which may be the property of the said Hunter has not been allotted to him, and as he consequently cannot sell any particular part of the land until such division takes place.

DAVID LAUGHED

Also, “On Friday the last day of this month will be sold by way of vendu, at the dwelling house of Joseph Kyle, living five miles from Lexington, on the Leestown road, a number of horned cattle, some of which are milch cows, a number of hogs, and a considerable quantity of house hold furniture, consisting of a neat case of drawers, a cupbord, a chest, feather beds and furniture, and a number of other articles too tedious to enumerate. The sale will begin about 11 o’clock where due attendance and credit will be given by the subscriber.

SAMUEL KYLE
May 22, 1799.

“Under date of Sept. 6, 1893 is this,–`For Sale. Two valuable plantations containing 355 acres, with large improvements, well watered, with bearing orchards and elegant buildings. Situate on the waters of Cane Run, six miles from Lexington, on the Georgetown road.-Will be sold together or apart, as may suit the purchasers. For further particulars apply to the subscribers living on the premises.

DAVID MITCHELL
DAVID LAUGHED
Cane Run, Sept. 1, 1803.

An Old Address

On a half sheet-part of an old letter–is the following address, written about 1805:

“To David Mitchell, in the State of Ohio, and Anthony Logan, in the same State, near the village of Daton. Favored by Mr. James Hays.

Clark’s Run

In speaking of Clark’s Run, Rev. I. N. Laughead says, that one James Miller, a stone mason, lived about a mile above his father’s place; that on a certain occasion an emigrant ship landed at the Philadelphia, and a friend of James Miller ran out on the wharf among the assembled crowd and called out: “Can any of you direct me to the road to Jamie Miller, the stonemason, on Clark’s run?”

David Mitchell’s Lands During the Revolution-Patent

“Whereas by virtue of a Warrant dated the tenth day of September, 1750, there hath been surveyed unto Harry Johnson a tract of land called “The Troublesome Jobb” situate in Peters township, Cumberland County. BEGINNING at a marked white oak, a corner of Samuel Templeton’s land thence by the same South seventy six degrees West forty three perches and an half to a post, thence by John Potters land North eleven degrees West one hundred and sixty four perches and a half to a post, & North two perches & a half to a marked White oak, thence by John McCays land North sixty seven degrees East sixty eight perches to a marked black oak, North twelve degrees East sixty eight perches to a marked white oak, South eighty degrees East seventy three perches to a marked white oak, North twelve degrees East forty nine perches to a marked hickory, and North eighty seven degrees East forty three perches to a marked hickory, thence by William Hollidays land North seventy five degrees East twenty-one perches and a half to a marked Spanish Oak, North eighteen degrees and an half East twelve perches and a half to a marked White oak, and South eighty eight degrees East forty four perches to a marked white oak, thence by James Antrikens land South four degrees and a half East one hundred and thirty two perches to a marked white oak, thence by William McClellans land South eighty eight degrees West thirty eight perches to a marked Ash at the side of a creek, thence by the Creek side South thirty six degrees West thirty four perches to a post, & thence South sixty eight degrees West six perches to a post at the said Creeks side, thence across said Creek North sixty two degrees West eight perches to a marked black oak, South eighty degrees West twenty one perches and two thirds to a marked Spanish Oak, sixty eight degrees West eighty five perches to a marked Hickory, and South four degrees West seventy nine perches & three quarters to the beginning, CONTAINING Two hundred and nineteen acres & sixty eight perches & allce AND WHEREAS in pursuance of a Warrant dated the 20th August, 1751, there hath been surveyed for John Potter a tract of land, called “Pottersfield” in Peters township afd. BEGINNING at a marked white oak a corner of James Scotts land, thence by Vacant land North seventy degrees East one hundred perches to a post, thence by Henry Johnsons land South Eleven degrees East one hundred and sixty four perches & a half to a post, thence by vacant land South seventy six degrees West sixty perches to a white oak, North twenty six degrees West sixty six perches to a hickory, thence by James Scott’s land North twenty eight degrees East seven perches to a white oak, North thirty seven degrees West sixty three perches to a post, and North twenty degrees East eighty one perches to the beginning, CONTAINING One hundred & thirty nine acres & 121 ps. &c., and the right to the sd. two tracts is now become vested in David Mitchell.

Confirmed to the said David Mitchell in consideration of fifty five pounds, twelve shillings money of Pennsylvania, subject to fealty tax of one half penny Sterling for every acre etc. Signed and sealed by John Penn Esq., Gov., May 3, 1774.

The foregoing lands were sold by David and Margaret Mitchell by Indenture made April 6, 1778, to Andrew Smith & acknowledged Aug. 28, 1779 before John Rannells J. P., and Recorded April 20, 1781.

Andrew Smith conveyed the tract of land to Michael, George & John Clapsaddle, deed dated, May 8, 1779, and recorded in deed book F. Vol. I. P. 56.

The Clapsaddles conveyed same to James Chambers by deed dated March 16, 1781, and recorded in Deed book F. Vol. 1 page 108, at Carlisle.”

Correspondence with all the registers of deeds in the several counties fails to bring to light any conveyance from James Chambers. It is altogether probable that the lands were covered by the Chambers tracts in and around Chambers Town now Chambersburg.

Prof. James Pollard Espy

James Espy, brother of Martha, the wife of James Mitchell, was born in Westmoreland County, Pa., May 9, 1785, and died at Cincinnati, Ohio, January 24, 1860.

While he was yet an infant, his father moved to Kentucky, James studied at Transylvania University at Lexington, graduating in 1808 ; taught school, and studied law at Xenia, Ohio, and practiced there for a short time; but finally abandoned the profession and gave himself to teaching. It is said that he considered this a noble profession, and even in old age was fond of drawing out young students to talk over their lessons with him, both hearing them and asking them questions.”

In 1817 he became a teacher in the Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, and became known as one of the best classical and mathematical instructors in that city. During this time he began to study the phenomena of storms and delivered lectures upon his studies and discoveries. In 7840, he visited Europe and won great attention for his theories.

In 1843, Prof. Espy was given a position in the U. S. War Department, where he instituted a service of daily weather reports, out of which the present signal service, or weather bureau, has grown into such prominence and usefulness. Like Morse with his telegraph he was most heartily would be most willing to encourage him a , soon as they discovered they had nothing to laugh at.

Prof. Henry of the Smithsonian said that Prof. Espy should be regarded as the father of the present Signal Service (Weather Bureau) of the United States; his Theory of Storms having led the way to its establishment and present success.” It is said that the charts now used in the service are identical (with some modifications) with those constructed by Prof. Espy, whose scientific sobriquet was the “Old Storm King.” Prof. Espy gave study to other subjects and is the author of a treatise on the Will.

First Covenanter Church

The late Rev. Dr. J. F. Morton, of Cedarville, say°s in a sketch of Cedarville congregation that in 1804 the family of David Mitchell from Kentucky and that of James Miller of Scotland settled along Clarke’s Run and held society meetings for some time, and that in 1809 they were visited by Revs. Thomas Donnelly and John Kell. They were afterward visited by Rev. John Black, who constituted the society and dispensed the sacrament to about ten members. The next few years brought several more families, and the supplies preached in the barns and log houses.

In 1812 they erected the first church building, which was a rude log structure with a clapboard roof, and stood on the farm of James Miller, some seven miles from Xenia. The Rev. John Kell preached for them about one-fourth of the time until 1816. In May, 1816, the Rev. Johnathan Gill became the pastor and remained in this relation for seven years. In 1823 the Rev. Gavin McMillan of Beech Woods gave one-fourth of his time for six years. . He was the last pastor of Margaret Mitchell. In 1824, a new house of worship was erected upon the banks of Massie’s Creek, two miles from Cedarville.

The particulars above mentioned are given for the purpose of showing just what advantages the venerable David and Margaret had in the way of their religious affiliation. Not so many nor so comfortable as we now have, but perhaps very much more appreciated by them than are our greater ones by us.

First Presbyterian Minister

Rev. Adam Rankin, to whom Margaret Mitchell refers in her journal; was one of the first Presbyterian ministers at Lexington. He had charge of the church at Cane Run. In 1789, he had a controversy with his Presbytery over the Psalmody question. He insisted on the sole use of the Psalms of David. The outcome of the controversy led to his withdrawal from the Presbytery in 1791, but he still kept his church. It was about this time that Margaret refers to him. When afterward, he preached a sermon favorable to slavery, the anti-slavery part of his congregation withdrew.

Indians at Clark’s Run

That this new country was not entirely rid of Indians when the new settlers came to it, Mr. Laughead relates the following: “When I was about two years old, father was called to help to suppress an Indian invasion in the North part of the State (War of 1812). Occasionally some friendly Indians had visited the neighborhood, but when Indians get on the war path, it is hard to tell who are friends and who are enemies. Mother was left with me and an infant sister. About sunset one evening two lone Indians passed near the door and camped not far from the cabin. With the charge on hand she could not flee to a neighbor’s, but must stay and comfort herself with the hope that they were friendly Indians. A large dog was her only guard. Some time in the night the dog commenced a terrible howling and got exceedingly fierce, bounding against the door with great force, which, however, was well barred. Mother said I fell prostrate on the floor in alarm, which added to her consternation. Whatever it was that had roused the dog it soon betook itself away, but Isaac, in his after life, never got over the dread of Indians.

Irish Presbyterians

President Roosevelt in his tribute to the Irish Presbyterians says, they were a bold and hardy race (which) is proved by their at once pushing past the settled regions, and plunging into the wilderness as the leaders of the white ad this; all others have merely followed in the wake of their predecessors. But, indeed, they were fitted to be Americans from the very start; they were kinsfolk of the Covenanters; they deemed it a religious duty to interpret their own bible, and held for a divine right the election of their own clergy. For generations their whole ecclesiastic and scholastic systems had been fundamentally democratic. In the hard life of the frontier they lost much of their religion, and they had but scant opportunity to give their children the schooling in which they believed: but what few schoolhouses there were on the border were theirs. The Irish schoolmaster was everywhere a feature of early Western society. * * * The creed of the backwoodsman who had a creed at all was Presbyterianism. (The Winning of the Vest, Vol. I, Ch. 5).

Our first American sire was all this and more. He was not only of kin to the Covenanters, but was, himself, an ardent professor of their faith. Instead of losing his religion in hi hard life on the frontier, he consistently maintained it to the end of his days, as may be judged from the story of his life and writings.

Letter from Samuel Kyle Mitchell

Sept. 21 and 29, 1903

On request, Mr. Mitchell diffidently gave us the following brief sketch of his life. He says:

“According to the record I was born June 20, 1822, at 12 o’clock in the night. Whether it was the first hour or the last hour of the 20th, the record does not say. Coming to the world that time of the night, left me in the dark as to events until my third year, when my mind began to open up, and I began to notice some of the things that occurred at that time. My grand mother Mitchell was living with my parents. Father had built an addition to their house. This was called grand mother’s room. The first thing that I can remember is that grandmother was sick in bed. It must have been her last sickness; she died February 4, 1825, which would make my age at that time about two years and eight months. The circumstance that I recalled was grandmother’s being in bed sick, and they had made her something to eat, which was called mull buttermilk. I was given some of it. I thought it was very good. I have always remembered seeing grandmother lying in bed, sick, and the taste of that dish. The circumstances always seemed as fresh as if they had been of recent occurrence. I have no distinct recollection of grandmother’s death. I was very fond of my mother and my sister, Maria.

I have a very vivid recollection of the religious training given me by my mother when I was at a tender age. She would take me to what was grandmother’s room, and there by a large chest that locked itself, we would kneel down together, and she would pray with and for me, dedicating me to the Lord. Another thing I remember distinctly at a very early age was when Mr. Jeremiah Morrow of Warren County was governor of the State. Infat going from his home (to the capitol) he rode on horse-back and made her’s house his stopping place to stay over night. I got to know him on sight, and being out in the yard I saw the governor riding down the lane. I ran into the house and, not yet talking plainly, I said “Yonder comes the gobbler.” I was a healthy, active, stirring boy; when old enough I went to school, which was not far from home; an old fashioned teacher, the spelling book and the gad composed the chief outfit in those days-especially the gad. For a few years I attended school three or four months in a year. This was the extent of my school opportunities. But I gathered up some of the rudiments. I learned to read quite well, and there was not a word in the old spelling book or Walker’s dictionary that I could not spell on announcement. I also got a little of the arithmetic. With this equipment I commenced the battle of life, and when I came to a problem that I did not understand, I went to work and worked it out, till I became master of the situation. I grew in years and tried to serve God and my parents aright. I was always faithful on attendance at church, and about the age of eighteen connected myself with it-the Rev. James P. Smart being the pastor. I lived with my parents and ran the farm.

At about the age of twenty I found a pretty little girl of whom I became very fond and persuaded her to marry me, which she did in her eighteenth year, I being in my twenty-first. We remained on the old place, which I farmed and paid father rent. I was not worth a dollar when I married, never had made any money- of my own, but we managed and got along.

My father died just six years after my marriage, when, in consequence of the farm being sold, I bought part of it. In the fall of 7.853, I sold out, and in the spring of 1854, moved to Cincinnati and engaged in the grocery business. After being there about one year I was made an elder of the Associate Church. We left Cincinnati in the fall of 185’7 and came to Cedarville where we have since remained. We connected with the Cedarville congregation. But a trouble arising over three things. abolition, temperance and dancing, we were among the persons who withdrew and went to Clifton, and became members of the new organization there. I was made one of the elders, and I feel that the great work of my life in Christian service was in the nearly thirty years that I way permitted to be an instrument of bringing some to Christ; and when 1 am permitted to enter that blessed kingdom and to wear the crown, that there will be some stars in it to shine forever. During the last ten or twelve years we have been members of the old (Cedarville) congregation, trying to fill our place to help on the cause of Christ.

I cannot estimate too highly the value of Christian parents, grandparents and Christian friends. O, what a boon it is to have a Christian mother. I verily believe that my mother dedicated me to the Lord before I was born. I have no doubt about my being one of God’s children, and yet I cannot recall the time when the change came. I thank God every day of my life for my Christian mother. I have now lived more than fourscore years, and my testimony is for the Christian life; nothing else will do.

We lived with my parents, after we were married, till about the first of the following April. We then commenced housekeeping, and on the first evening before we retired, we erected the family altar. I, then and there, as we bowed in worship, although in great weakness, asked God to be our God, protector and guide throughout the journey of life; and from that day to this, that altar has remained as a monument of our devotion to God, and of his love and goodness to us. My testimony is that family religion is a very important part of the Christian’s life.

SAMUEL K. MITCHELL

Letter of Capt. Cuthbertson Small to His Niece, Mrs. Elizabeth Bell

Cedarville, O., July 1o, 1885.

My Dear Lizzie :

You ask me to give you a little history of my family. M y knowledge respecting father’s family is very limited. Grandfather Small I think came from Scotland, and settled on the waters of the Junietta River in Pennsylvania, where the family were all born; James, -Mathew, John and Elizabeth. Three brothers and one sister are all I ever heard father speak of.

Elizabeth married William English, a Revolutionary soldier, who At the close of the war, they all left their father’s house; all went to Kentucky. Mathew drifted south; John went back to Pennsylvania; and father came to Ohio.

Father married Margaret Mitchell, daughter of David Mitchell, who, in 1779, sold his property in Pennsylvania, got a trunk full of Continental money, and he and one or two other families got a flat boat, put their families aboard, and floated down the Ohio, to Louisville, Ky., and then through the wilderness to where Lexington now stands. I heard mother say there was not a stick of timber cut from Brownhill, Pa., to Louisville. There was a station or stockade at Lexington for them to go into to keep the red-skins from scalping them. I heard mother say she never tasted bread until they raised the wheat. They had dried venison for bread and bear’s ham for meat.

Grandfather was a heroic old fellow; he went out north of Lexington six miles and raised a patch of corn, and the government gave him 1000 acres of land-what was called a “corn right.” His continental money all died in his trunk. Father went there a few years afterwards and I think was married in 1788 or 1789. As quick as slavery was adopted they got up and moved to Ohio in 1805.

C. S. SMALL.

The Brownhill referred to in the foregoing letter is, doubtless, the same place as Brown’s Mill which, on a map of 1775, is located in Peters township, on the great Conococheague creek, and slightly southwest of Chambersburg, Pa. The mill was likely at the foot of the hill, and both names, probably, were given to the locality. The “Troublesome Jobb” farm was not far from Brownhill.

Lexington’s First Cabin

The statement has been repeated by each generation of descendants that David Mitchell built the first cabin in Lexington. This statement was made in his day. The fact was a thing of no consequence to David, and personally, we may believe, he said very little about it. But his children repeated it and he allowed them to do so. As the town grew rapidly into importance and was by right entitled to be the capital of the state, David’s descendants made very much of the fact. It was of great interest to them something of which to boast.

Now, it is impossible for us to believe that David Mitchell would have tolerated the currency of such a statement if it had not been the truth. His descendants, too, were people of the strictest integrity, and they could not have allowed themselves to circulate a falsehood, even in the interest of a unique and conspicuous honor. Yet no tradition has been handed down from parent. to child among the descendants of David Mitchell with more persistence than this one-“He built the first cabin in the town of Lexington.”

However, we are not left to tradition alone for proof. In Dr. Richard H. Collins’ history of Kentucky (Vol. 2, p. 1’i9) copies of depositions are given which were taken at Lexington in May, 1804, for a case pending in the Harrison County Court, in which the fact, whether or not the town of Lexington was in existence at the time of Bowman’s expedition against the Indians in Ohio in May, 1779 Several of the deponents seemed not to be clear that there was such a place. The historian then goes on to say that in the same series of depositions-all taken in the summer of 1804 to prove another matter located forty miles north of Lexington-are some which are more to the point.

“David Mitchell deposed that he was not in Bowman’s expedition in May, 1’i79, but at the time was a resident in Lexington: he killed meat for the garrison while the army was out; he recollected of fourteen citizens coming over from Harrodsburgh to settle in Lexington about the 14th of April in that year: Robert Patterson and John Morrison were two.

Josiah Collins deposed that he had come from Harrodsburgh to Lexington in April, 1’x’79. Major John Morrison deposed that he became a resident in April, 1779. Capt. Samuel Johnson deposed that in April, 1’i79, Col. Robert Patterson with himself and others made a settlement at the town of Lexington.

From the foregoing testimony it is clear that David Mitchell was on the site of Lexington a while at least before the arrival of Col. Patterson and his company, who then proceeded to construct the fort. It is not to be thought that David Mitchell during these few days or weeks before had not begun a shelter for himself. But it is most reasonable to believe that he constructed his cabin out of the trees at his hand, and was occupying it when the troops from Harrodsburgh arrived. Col. Patterson and Major Morrison were old time Pennsylvania friends of David Mitchell and quite likely shared the shelter of the cabin with David the first night of their settlement in the place. This cabin was the first of a row, which formed one side of the fort. A Biographical history of recent date says that Col. Robert Patterson built the first house on the site of the present city of Lexington. If, by the word “house” a building other than a cabin is meant then it may be true that Col. Patterson did build it. But the contention is that David Mitchell, and not Col. Patterson or any other man, built the first cabin on the site of that now very distinguished and important city. It is quite probable that the compiler of the biographical statement meant that Col. Patterson built the first fort at Lexington, which is true.

David Mitchell had an object in being so early on the ground. He had come on from his Pennsylvania home to break his ground in early spring time, and, to plant his corn and thus secure the corn grant, which Virginia offered to such planters; also, to prepare for himself and his family a dwelling prior to his returning and bringing the latter with him, which he did the following fall.

No Family Record Kept

Air. VT. W. Britton of Upper Strasburg, Pa., says: “I have always had difficulty in tracing the lineage of the Scotch Irish. They were always “forninst” the government and to show their contempt for the Church of England people (we were careful to have their pedigree recorded) made it a point to keep no record.”

Note from Martha Mitchell Clark

“My father (David Mitchell) was born, 1797. In his childhood days, he was much petted by his grand mother Margaret, and as all spoiled children he became wilful and gave her much trouble. In telling of his conversion, father said. “Soon after we were married, we lived in a part of the house with a young man, who had lately been converted. This young man had erected a family altar. Father came under conviction. He thought, “There is a man, brought up in ignorance of God or His ways, who is now serving Him with all his heart, while I, from my earliest recollection, have been instructed in God’s truth.”

Father delayed not. He immediately- took side with God, and from that hour his whole life was devoted to right living. On every question, father could be found always on the side of righteousness. He suffered much persecution because of his adherence to principle. This was notably so in the days of the abolition agitation. Father kept a station on the underground railway and many a poor colored man was sheltered and helped on his way to freedom. My grand father ‘Morrow ryas displeased with father’s “fanatical” manner of doing things; he did not take in God’s helping hand; he feared father would be arrested and his daughter brought into disgrace. But God protected him through those years. My parents belonged to the Associate Reformed Church, and during this period of my life, my mother died. She was blessedly prepared for death, and shouted God’s praise when all thought her dying. Father had, for a long time, insisted that mother would take a hart in our family worship, and when able would read a portion of God’s word, but could not be induced to pray aloud. This grieved father, and if called from home, when he returned after the first greeting, he would inquire of me, “Did your mother hold worship?”

She never, until on her death bed, overcame her early education and natural timidity.

Father ruled his household with kindly firmness; he led his family through peaceful ways, and when death met him, after a few hours of sickness, he was prepared; he had nothing to do; but like the old patriarch-to depart in peace. Among his dying utterances, he said, “For twenty years I have lived for this hour.” “I have a hope big with immortality and eternal life.” My father’s life always affected my own, and when far strayed away in worldly ways, the memory of Father’s life was always an appeal to return to father’s God. “The memory of the just is blessed.”

After my mother’s death, my father took my sister Mary and myself to stay for a time with my grand mother, Martha Mitchell. Here we went to the little schoolhouse, and grand mother helped to inspire an ambition to study, in my rather dull and neglected mind. No one ever lost anything of implanted good with grand mother; and as I look back I am sure her own sense of righteousness, her fine perceptions of truth, must have greatly influenced father’s life. The children were always glad to see grandmother in her few visits to our house. Those dear old people may have been too strict in outward forms, but no one brought up to regard sacred God’s obligation and His holy day, but the hallowed influence lingers in the heart, not to be obliterated.

Note From Mrs. J. R. Nichol

Our grand father, James Mitchell, fought in Indian wars both before and after his marriage. My father was seven years old when they came to Ohio. I heard Aunt Ann say, they lived in wagons while they built the house; but they first put in a crop. I don’t know what nor how much.

Notes from Mrs. M. M. K. White

The Reids were neighbors of our great grand father. Mr. Reid (William and Robert) used to tell of going over there and carrying in wood for our great grand mother, and about our Grand mother (Ruth) Kyle going there to visit, and that the grand mother always kissed her when leaving. They thought it strange, for that fashion did not prevail at that time. It seems that Ruth was the favorite daughter. Aunt Small said, that when the father and mother went into town, they would ask what was wanted by the girls. The oldest would ask for a dress, but Ruth always asked for a book. She seethed to be a very superior person when young, or she would not have been admired by the two noted Covenanter ministers, Dr. McLeod of New York and Dr. Samuel B. Wylie of Philadelphia.

Aug. 25, 1903.

I went over to the War Department last week, prepared to copy all that I might find, that would be interesting in regard to our great grand father Mitchell. The official was very obliging and sent for the records. He said that the State of Pennsylvania had turned over very little material to the War Department, and what they had turned in was very frail, and they only allowed an expert to handle it. When the papers came in, he said that he had given you all the material (information) they had. He said they had no copy of the names of the company of any description of the soldiers. He said the list had been kept in Pennsylvania because a very rich man, named Morris had given money to pay the soldiers, and the list had been kept in order to remunerate him at some time for his generosity. He also said that the soldiers- went out for three months or more and then returned home to make the crop and that will account for the company being short lived. He (David Mitchell) may have gone more than once for some months. He asked if our great grand father had received a pension. 1 thought not, for he seemed to have been a man of considerable means. T know my grand mother (Kyle) received monks that in that day was considered a good amount. He then said when he built the first cabin on the site of Lexington, KY. So he directed me to a Mr. Bryant of the Pension office. To the Pension office I went; saw the assistant. He asked if he received a pension or his wife; gave grand mother’s name. She lived to a great age, and might possibly have received one. I know that Aunt Margaret Small did receive a pension from her husband’s service in the War of 1812. They failed to find anything. The gentleman said they would have had to have been in very deep poverty to have received any pension previous to 1818.

Sept. 19, 1906.

I cannot tell you the date of Grand father Kyle’s marriage, except to get as near as I can by the children’s ages. Aunt Margaret the eldest, was born in 180; grand father in 17 7 7, she in 1.783, she would be 17 in 1800, he 23. The story is told that Dr. Samuel B. Wylie of Philadelphia admired her very much, when he saw her in Kentucky, and that great grandfather and great grandmother Mitchell went to Synod a short time afterwards (I think to Philadelphia, or it may have been Pittsburgh), Dr. Wylie asked them for their daughter, and if she was married. They replied that she would he, as soon as they returned home to a young Squire Kyle. He asked if they were pleased? They said, yes.

Rough Experience in the War

From the records, it can be seen that a large number of the descendants of David Mitchell were in the Union service during the civil war. Many of them suffered great hardships; several gave their lives. Doubtless each of the brave departed had, as well as the living now has, a true and thrilling story of rough usage during that terrible struggle for the preservation of our Union, which would greatly interest all surviving relatives and friends.

We requested cousin, J. J. Mitchell, to give his story, and he does so as follows

Entered the army Aug. 4, 1862, at the age of 18; serving 3 years less 6 weeks and 2 days in Co. D, 44th O. V. I. In Jan. 1864, the Regt. veteranized as the 8th Vet. Vol. Cavalry, and discharged by reason of end of war. The 44th was mounted, Feb. 16, 1863, and was in saddle much of the time, day and night, with no regular camp, but scouted in Eastern Ky. and Middle Tennessee until Aug. 1st, same year, when we were dismounted to march about 300 miles from Danville, Ky., to Knoxville. Tenn. There was no wagon train to go along, so each soldier was loaded down like pack mules, to carry 10 days rations, an extra suit of clothes, and full infantry equipments, as well as 80 rounds of Enfield rifle ammunition. Each soldier carried one-half of a so-called “pup” or dog tent, and a gun pouch. I weighed my load and found it to be 139 pounds. which was quite a load for a boy like I was-only 19 years old, 5 ft. 10½ inches high and weighing 160 pounds.

After seeing a continual service for over six months and then to be dismounted and be “pack” horses with such a load, and march 300 miles in hot months, was not to our liking, so the entire regiment struck or mutinied. We were put in line one evening and ordered to stack arms, to be put under arrest. But every man, when ordered to leave guns and step 3 paces to the rear, took his gun with him, which meant to fight and resist the 104th O. V. L, which was to guard and hold us under arrest. That was a fearful July night, when we lay at place-rest in front of our company quarters, awaiting the outcome of our mutinous action. But after a lecture to each company separately, with good but faithfully kept promises from our beloved colonel, we were quieted down and dismissed, to quarters. A more dreadful night than any battle I was in! We were as one man, and our colonel knew it. On that march beginning Aug. 16, 1863 (the hottest day that year), we subsisted mostly on roasting ears. Burnside with his 20,000 took Knoxville, scarcely firing a shot, then under light marching orders, marched 60 mile in 60 hours, and captured Reb. Gen. Frazier and Cumberland Gap. Was in siege of Knoxville where the Rebs were so badly slaughtered in following December and Longstreets army routed and driven to the Virginia line.

We veteranized, Jan. 6, 1864, just after that cold New Years, in the cavalry service, with a furlough home, making a march of 165 miles by way of Big Creek Gap to Lexington, Ky., through deep snow; “which proved a blessing,” (?) as we were without shoes, using pieces of blankets for socks and gum blankets for shoes to keep our feet dry.

We drew for the march only three spoonsful each, of sugar and coffee and 5 hard tack; as the rations could not be spared from the troops remaining there, leaving us to forage through the mountains where we would only see from one to three houses per day, for about 500 to forage from. But we made up for it in Cincinnati while lodging in 5th Street market barracks.

The 60 day furlough passed too quickly. Reported to Gen. Sheridan in Va., and put in a hard summer doing active scouting and fighting, while m winter quarters at Beverly, Va., we were surprised by Reb. Gen. Duke, that cold morning of Jan. 11, my 21st birthday, and after being stripped by the rebs of every desirable bit of clothing-being exchanged for their worn out and bad fitting clothing-and scarcely any food, we marched across mountains, waded rivers, when our clothes would be frozen like boards in 15 minutes after coming out of the water, till we arrived near Stanton, Va., in a heavy sleet storm. From here we were carried in open cattle cars to Richmond and put in Libby prison, here the only food was broken down poor mules, unscreened tailings of rice as it came from the barn floor, a two-inch cube of partly cracked corn in saltless bread but well baked. As occasional dessert we had 2 gill of soured pumpkin molasses. And as to glassless windows, no fire, and the vermin I forbear to make mention. Only by 300 men being huddled in small rooms we kept each other warm. But we had plenty of hydrant water when not frozen up. On return from army, I spent one year in school.

I am still, at 63, hale and hearty and able do a hard day’s work; have never used tobacco nor tasted any kind of liquor; am a staunch Republican.

The Pack Saddle

This rude contrivance of the early pioneers was made of the forked branch of a tree in keeping with the simplicity of the times. When fastened up on a horse it became the receptacle of the goods and chattels to be transported. Thus were carried provisions for the journey and the household stuff and utensils needed to make life tolerable when the journey was ended and the place of residence selected. The fork had to have a particular shape and the branch of a tree which could be made into a saddle was an attractive object. It is related that an early preacher once paused in his Sunday sermon with his eye fixed on the top of a tree. He said: “I want to say right here, that yonder is one of the very best forks for a pack-saddle I ever saw in the woods. When services are over we will get it.”

This method of carrying burdens caused the word “pack” to be used for carry, and the misuse of the word is still common among Kentucky people.

Thomas Turnbull

In the tenth volume of the U. S. Industrial Commission’s Report on Agriculture and Agricultural Labor, beginning at page 967, a lengthy report is given of the testimony of Mr. Thomas Turnbull, who was selected by the California State Board of Trade to represent the State’s industrial needs and conditions before the Congressional Industrial Commission.

In the introduction to his testimony, given June 12, 1901, he says

“I have undertaken in the present report to briefly outline the attractions which our State offers to the home seeker, the capitalist, the tiller of the soil, the manufacturer, the miner, the lumberman, in short, to all who wish to engage in this new and promising field of enterprise.

“I shall not attempt to conceal an intense affection for the State of my adoption, but I wish to assure your honorable commission that this partiality shall not tinge the facts which I present: They, at least, shall have the foundation of absolute truth. The love of Californians for their State, which is proverbial, is not devoid of justification. What other country presents such inspiration of love and devotion? In what other country is there broader freedom of thought and action? In what other country are the alluring prophecies which attend young life more certain of fulfillment? In what other country do the higher blessings of peace and plenty minister to the comforts of age? Are there other countries in which honest industry achieves higher respect, or in which labor earns a higher meed of profit and honor?

“Looking backward we see a history founded in the romance of adventure. In the present we are laying the foundations of a noble commonwealth by the establishment of permanent industries. If, therefore, the manifestation of love for our State may sometimes appear boastful or provincial, let it find apology in the consideration that provincialism is an expression of local patriotism, and that with the people of California it is the inspiration of high endeavor, which, when duly chastened, will ripen for our beloved State its growing harvest of hope.”

The San Francisco newspapers speak of Mr. Turnbull as being one of the prominent members of the Ohio Society of that city, and an authority on agricultural matters, especially of fruit growing. In the recognition of excellent work done by him in the prosecution of the “Federal Salt Trust,” in which he was special agent of the U. S. Department of Justice, a large number of prominent business men of San Francisco and Oakland presented him with a loving cup. The evidence he gathered proved so strong that the government won a notable victory, and as a result the price of salt was reduced several hundred percent from that to which it had been forced up by the Trust.

Two Relatives of this Book

I. The “History and Genealogy of the Espy Family in America,” by Miss Florence Mercy Espy, Fort Madison, Iowa, was published in 1903. By the author’s kind permission much information, respecting the Espy branch of the Mitchell family obtained there from, appears herein.

II. The “Genealogy of the Jackson Family,” by the Reverend Hugh Parks Jackson, United Presbyterian Church, published in 1890, has been helpful in tracing the descendants of 8 William Laughead.The statement has been repeated by each generation of descendants that David Mitchell built the first cabin in Lexington. This statement was made in his day. The fact was a thing of no consequence to David, and personally, we may believe, he said very little about it. But his children repeated it and he allowed them to do so. As the town grew rapidly into importance and was by right entitled to be the capital of the state, David’s descendants made very much of the fact. It was of great interest to them something of which to boast.
Now, it is impossible for us to believe that David Mitchell would have tolerated the currency of such a statement if it had not been the truth. His descendants, too, were people of the strictest integrity, and they could not have allowed themselves to circulate a falsehood, even in the interest of a unique and conspicuous honor. Yet no tradition has been handed down from parent. to child among the descendants of David Mitchell with more persistency than this one-“He built the first cabin in the town of Lexington.”

However, we are not left to tradition alone for proof. In Dr. Richard H. Collins’ history of Kentucky (Vol. 2, p. 1’i9) copies of depositions are given which were taken at Lexington in May, 1804, for a case pending in the Harrison County Court, in which the fact, whether or not the town of Lexington was in existence at the time of Bowman’s expedition against the Indians in Ohio in May, 1779 Several of the deponents seemed not to be clear that there was such a place. The historian then goes on to say that in the same series of depositions-all taken in the summer of 1804 to prove another matter located forty miles north of Lexington-are some which are more to the point.

“David Mitchell deposed that he was not in Bowman’s expedition in May, 1’i79, but at the time was a resident in Lexington: he killed meat for the garrison while the army was out; he recollected of fourteen citizens coming over from Harrodsburgh to settle in Lexington about the 14th of April in that year: Robert Patterson and John Morrison were two.

Josiah Collins deposed that he had come from Harrodsburgh to Lexington in April, 1’x’79. Major John Morrison deposed that he became a resident in April, 1779. Capt. Samuel Johnson deposed that in April, 1’i79, Col. Robert Patterson with himself and others made a settlement at the town of Lexington.

From the foregoing testimony it is clear that David Mitchell was on the site of Lexington a while at least before the arrival of Col. Patterson and his company, who then proceeded to construct the fort. It is not to be thought that David Mitchell during these few days or weeks before had not begun a shelter for himself. But it is most reasonable to believe that he constructed his cabin out of the trees at his hand, and was occupying it when the troops from Harrodsburgh arrived. Col. Patterson and Major Morrison were oldtime Pennsylvania friends of David Mitchell and quite likely shared the shelter of the cabin with David the first night of their settlement in the place. This cabin was the first of a row, which formed one side of the fort. A Biographical history of recent date says that Col. Robert Patterson built the first house on the site of the present city of Lexington. If, by the word “house” a building other than a cabin is meant then it may be true that Col. Patterson did build it. But the contention is that David Mitchell, and not Col. Patterson or any other man, built the first cabin on the site of that now very distinguished and important city. It is quite probable that the compiler of the biographical statement meant that Col. Patterson built the first fort at Lexington, which is true.

David Mitchell had an object in being so early on the ground. He had come on from his Pennsylvania home to break his ground in early spring time, and, to plant his corn and thus secure the corn grant, which Virginia offered to such planters; also, to prepare for himself and his family a dwelling prior to his returning and bringing the latter with him, which he did the following fall.



MLA Source Citation:

AccessGenealogy.com. Web. 17 December 2014. http://www.accessgenealogy.com/illinois/david-and-margaret-mitchell-genealogy-appendix.htm - Last updated on Dec 11th, 2012


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